Xi Jinping Plans to Fund Pakistan

Xi Jinping Plans to Fund Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — President Xi Jinping of China on Tuesday concluded an upbeat two-day visit to Pakistan during which he pledged $46 billion worth of energy and infrastructure projects.

The ambitious new development plans center on a network of Chinese rail and road projects linking the port of Gwadar, on the Arabian Sea, with Xinjiang Province in western China. But officials say much of the planned funding, up to $37 billion, would go toward fixing Pakistan’s dilapidated power infrastructure — an urgent and long-unsolved problem that experts say shaves at least 2 percent off the country’s gross domestic product each year.

That influx could be a huge benefit for the ailing Pakistani economy. But security concerns in the region the Chinese transportation corridor would cut through, the violent breakaway province of Baluchistan, hang over the project. As if to emphasize the risk, separatist rebels were accused of staging an attack near the port of Gwadar just before Mr. Xi addressed the Pakistani Parliament in Islamabad.

The Chinese government also has its own separatist threat to worry about, posed by ethnic Uighur militants from its western Xinjiang region. Some of those militants have been spotted in Pakistan’s northwestern tribal belt, where international militant groups have long found aid and training.

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